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October 19, 1934 “Otherwise not much happened last week.”

October 19, 1934 “Otherwise not much happened last week.”

October 19, 1934

I just received a card from Max Wolff. He is coming here for 2 days and I will be very happy to receive some personal news from you. He will probably have a lot to tell you about me when he comes back.

Instead of attending Carmen on Saturday we went to another excellent theater. And before that we went with Joe Hamburger to a movie — “Romance in the Rain,” very nice. And the next day again a movie “One More River,” also very good.

One More River

One More River - Click on image for YouTube

Monday night I had dinner in Leonard’s office with him and Alfred Hamburger.

Since last week I am crocheting a black sweater on the train on my way to and from work. Maybe I’ll finish it by 1936. Otherwise not much happened last week. Romance in the Rain

One evening I was at Rose’s, yesterday at Louise Hamburger, whose mother will be 80 yrs old this week.

Leonard and I planned to have dinner together tonight but he is busy. Instead we will go out real great tomorrow evening. I will wear my black evening dress. All I know is that we have already tickets for Carmen but I do not know what else he is planning.

I finally had my hair cut again today and I look and feel much better. I talked to Rose Tauber, daughter of Fanny Ratzenstein, Aunt Jenny’s sister. Those two are not on speaking terms.

Trudel working with hat on block

Aunt Fanny is out of town until next week. I will call her again then and make a date.

Yesterday we had rain for the 1st time in 19 days.

Today it is beautiful again. Had a letter from Kurt Dillenberg, he would like me to find a job for him here. That’s all I need.

How are your jobs, girls? Did you get the new apartment all in order yet? How come you did not use Dellihausen for your moving?

Now I am going to work on some hats — A red one for myself that I want to wear tomorrow night and fix a few for other people. I am getting to be a dressmaker too now. I altered a few dresses for Aunt Henny. I just finished a delicious dinner. Henny is a great cook, spaghetti, tomato sauce and cheese.

That’s all for today.


10/22/34
Bismark Hotel Lobby

Postcard showing Bismark Hotel Lobby

Picture postal card of Bismark Hotel where I went with Max Wolff.



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November 17, 1934 “It’s good to have friends everywhere.”

November 17, 1934 “It’s good to have friends everywhere.”

11/17/34

My very very dear ones,

So glad Pappa’s [long] letter arrived here yesterday. Otherwise I might have addressed you differently [because it had been so long since they had written] and I am sure I will receive Doddo’s long promised long letter some day. I am only wondering if it will come in 1935 or 1936.

Dear Pappa seems to have the same trouble as I do. I sit down and don’t know what to write and all of a sudden 3 pages are full. I guess some of the questions I have answered already and I will try to answer the rest now. I wonder if one of my letters got lost since my numbers do not jive with yours anymore.

Dear Bubule, please give my regards to Dr. Samuel when you see him. I wrote a card to Dr. English and wonder if he received it.

Today I am using Leonard’s typewriter for this letter but it does not go any faster than if I write by hand.

1934 DeSotoAirflo

!934 DeSoto


The friendship between Hamburgers and Aunt Henny is not too strong and Julius is with them like with most nice people – broges [angry, upset]. Henny had mostly business affairs with them. Between Leonard and them is also only more acquaintances than friendship.

Actually it was not necessary for Julius to vouch for me [for papers to come to the United States]. Anybody else could have signed the papers. But I still am thankful to him that he did it.

I do not look forward to going to court again next Tuesday [in the divorce between Trudel’s Aunt Henny and Uncle Julius].

It makes such a difference if one is dressed well here.

Trudel

Trudel

If I get mother’s jet dress I will probably make an evening jacket out of it. That is very stylish here now, with a little cap from the same material. You probably think, What worries does she have? But it makes such a difference if one is dressed well here. Not only that it makes one feel better.

Today I made myself a real pretty little hat from the left overs of my blue housecoat. It happens to match exactly the color of a cheap dress I bought last week. I also made a green hat to match another cheap dress I bought. So I have now 6 hats and I will make myself a black velvet cap.

Yesterday I got a new customer. The black girl who cleans my room. She saw me working on a hat and asked me to make it for her in brown.

Choices

I cannot make up my mind what to do about my room. Some people say I have to get out of this neighborhood as soon as possible while others agree that I live in my room which I like and don’t bother about the neighborhood. And it is so convenient to go where ever I want.

It is now Saturday at 9:00 p.m. Leonard has some work to do so we came here to the office in the pouring rain.

It’s good to have friends everywhere.

Reinhardt on the set of midsummer's nights dream

Max Reinhardt and cast on the set of a production of Midsummer Nights Dream

Last night we were again together with the portrait painter and his wife. They have a car very similar to Lu’s only it is a DeSoto. As usual first dinner then a so-so movie and a cup of coffee afterwards. He had trouble finding a place to park so a policeman just put the sign “no parking” away. It’s good to have friends everywhere. Next Saturday the four of us want to see a “MidSummer Night’s Dream” under the direction of Max Reinhardt.

I finally talked to Aunt Fanny and made a date with her for next Tuesday. At work we were very busy this past week. Another company worked in our place and I do not know why. I helped them there.

I pretended not to understand any English and heard them talk about me.

I pretended not to understand any English and heard them talk about me. One said that I was very slow–so what else is new. And then another said I did such very good work. That is much more important to me.

One of the ladies from the other company asked me for my address and phone number. They are not sure if they are coming back to work with us next week and she would like me to come to work for them. I was really surprised that she picked me from 8 other girls who work much faster than I but it proved to me that I know something, even if they cannot use me [next week].

Broges! Family!

Otherwise there is not much to tell, except that a brother of Julius Seckbach was run over by a car and died on the way to the hospital. It happened on the day when Rose and her husband were going to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary. Of course that was canceled. After all he was her husband’s brother.

Did I tell you that Henny insulted her sister in law very much and nobody could convince her to apologize until several weeks later. The day before I moved out she finally called her and asked Rose to forgive her. Actually I had on Opa’s insistence planned to rent a room from Rose, but because those 2 were feuding I did not do it. Just as well. But I am glad they made up.

Flora Mae

Flora Mae

I have no idea what is going to happen to Henny’s plans to go to Florida. The legal aspects with Julius are not finished yet and her money from working at the Fair is slowly running out. She is now again selling Xmas postal cards. A very big business here.

I was with her last Tuesday and will go again tomorrow evening. It takes me at least 1 hr to get home from her. Thursday night I was at Samuels. It takes 1½ hr. each way. That is like going from Ffm Center [Downtown Frankfurt] to Hamburg.

This afternoon Leonard and I picked up his adorable Flora Mae again. She and I get along great and I have been playing games with her. As usual we 3 had dinner at the Madison Park Hotel.

It is only 4½ more years before I can become an American citizen.

Madison Park Hotel

Madison Park Hotel in later years

If this letter is kind of messed up it is because I am using the typewriter and I have to look at the letters all the time. I have been typing for over 1 hr now. It is awfully slow when one is as bad a typist as I am.

I try to correspond with some of the people of the boat and every day I hear of more refugees who are coming here. It is only 4½ more years before I can become an American citizen. How the time flies.

Love and kisses,
Noodlesoup


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January 1, 1935 “Happy New Year! It was the most beautiful New Year’s Eve I ever had.”

January 1, 1935 “Happy New Year! It was the most beautiful New Year’s Eve I ever had.”

Jan 1, 1935

Happy New Year!

In my last letter I forgot to put a number, so today with the New Year I shall start with #1 again.

LaSalle Hotel New Year's Eve Menu

Menu Cover from LaSalle Hotel (a decade later)

Between midnight and 1 a.m. this morning I wanted to write a postal card to you but no matter how hard he tried, my sweetheart could not find a postal card in the whole La Salle Hotel. So now you know already where we started the New Year with good friends.

But now I want to tell things in chronological order.

I had a very enjoyable Xmas. We played Santa Klaus for darling Flora Mae. We spent the afternoon with her with a lot of presents. In the evening we went to a movie and then had a cognac at one of Leonard’s friends and we came home very late.

LaSalle Hotel

LaSalle Hotel

I told you already about the stockings I filled for my darling. Well, I never had more fun than when I watched him take out each little package and carefully unwrap it. And I got an extra kiss for each of the 32 packages* and I also received a beautiful Xmas card with a saying just perfect for both of us, and a gorgeous evening dress, made to order this week especially for last night. Enclosed samples.

The dress was made from the white and silver brocade and the short jacket is red velvet with a matching coat, silver shoes, and a small white pearl evening bag. From the left over materials I made myself a pretty turban. I really looked beautiful. I felt like the prettiest and most elegant woman there. I even went to a beauty parlor to have my hair and fingernails (not bright red) done.

We were together with Gwen and Ed Bishop. She is the one we tried to see horseback riding on my birthday. It was a great beginning for the New Year. We drank quite a bit and several times to your good health and well being and a good 1935.

Walkathon Ending

Near the End of a Walk-a-Thon (Life)

After supper we went to a walk-a-thon. You probably remember the marathon dancing. Here instead of dancing these poor people are walking or dragging themselves around for 22 days continuously now.

Leonard knows the manager and he announced us when we arrived over the microphone. I felt very funny having to stand up and get applause. We stayed only a very short time. By the way, at the La Salle Hotel we were followed by a newspaper photographer. If they print a picture I will of course send you a copy. We went to several other places and came home at 7:15 a.m. It was the most beautiful New Year’s Eve I ever had.

I better go to bed now to sleep out my hang-over.

Love,
Trudelchen

(On the edge of the letter, In German)

Greetings to you all. We celebrated the most beautiful New Year’s eve in our lives, with my beautiful sweetheart the prettiest young woman in the world. I wish you all as much happiness as Trudelchen is bringing me.

Devotedly,
Leonard


* In her handwritten corrections to the typescript of her translation, she inserted the Yiddish word chalomes before “packages.” But that doesn’t seem to make sense. It seems to mean “dreams.”

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January 11, 1935 “I almost slept in a bed Lincoln slept in, but it was too hard”

January 11, 1935  “I almost slept in a bed Lincoln slept in, but it was too hard”

This letter was written on January 10, 1935 and completed on January 11.

Jan 10, 1935

Dear Goldkinder,

Although I have not heard from you, I will write you now. Am I not a good girl?

If I am not mistaken I have not written a very sensible letter to you yet this year. Thanks for postal cards from Xmas–Saalburg and New Year’s Eve Cafe at the Hauptwache. I received them with thanks.

Cafe_Hauptwache

Cafe Hauptwache

Just imagine today I finally received the balance of my salary owed me by Budwig (Gus Bing). Somehow the check was delayed in the mail and I finally got it.

Rose and Max Seckbach moved to California last Monday. She could not stand the weather and temperature here any longer because of her very bad asthma and hay fever. I went to see them off and saw the whole family again. Opa, her father, lives now with a lady where I almost rented a room. Hans has taken a room in one of the best hotels on the South Side.

That evening I realized again how clever I was not to have a lot of people there (at the boat dock) when I left Germany. There were so many tears shed.

Postcard from Saalburg

An Old Postcard from Saalburg

I now have a nice new friend: Gwen Bishop. I wrote you about her before. We are spending quite some time together. I helped her make a dress and made a hat and little purse to go with it. She also is having the black and light blue sweater from me when I finish it. I will also crochet a skirt to go with it. I even slept one night at their house this week.

When I came there after work it was very icy and slippery and it got worse during the evening. So they did not let me go home. I almost slept in a bed Abraham Lincoln had slept in a few times but it was too hard for me. Instead I slept in a bed so large I was afraid to get lost in it.

And I wore a very beautiful crepe de chine nightgown with a lot of lace trimming.

This morning we went downtown together and then I went home with her again. They asked me to stay another night but I did not feel like it. Since she had only 5 flat irons I had her give me 1 of them.

BishopHome

Gwen Bishop's Home

I also visited with Aunt Henny this week. I had been trying repeatedly to call her without success but she complained to several people that I was neglecting her. Finally I wrote her a postal card. She was in bed for a couple of days with a very bad cold, but she is much better now.

Everybody here has a cold and cough. Leonard and I did changing off too. We did not even try to see Flora Mae yet this year. We are both o.k. now.

One evening last week I was at Aunt Fanny Ratzenstein. It was very nice. We looked at old photos which was very enjoyable. I gave her the photo of Tante Dortche in front of her house, which she appreciated.

At work we are quite busy now. I am not sure what I should do. At this job I do not earn very much but know I have a secure job. If I change I may have work for 3 months maybe and then I sit at home.

For 3 weeks we had a forelady here who we found out on the last day came here from Bremmen and was for 2 yrs kinderfraulein for a family in Ffm. She did not like this job here and told me on Friday that she would not be here on Monday. She gave me her phone number and asked me to get in touch with her.

Also Gus Bing’s wife, who I met at the train station Monday, gave me her address and phone number. She suggested that I come some evening with my boyfriend for dinner. Leonard is right now very busy so I may go there alone 1 evening next week. After all Gus is in the millinery business and I know he liked my work.

Hauptmann Lindbergh Trial Headline

Aunt Henny is still considering leaving Chicago. Now she is talking about California instead of Fla.

Since 2 weeks I buy a newspaper every night and read for about 1½ hrs. I am closely following the Hauptmann-Lindbergh case. You have probably heard of it too.

I received New Year’s cards from Dr. Samuel and Dr. Billingheimer. I think that is very nice. Ilse Niederman wrote me a 4 page letter in very good English. That shows what we can do if we really want to.

I am wondering when I will hear from you again. Remember you were going to send me my papers and report cards from the Trade School.

On last Thursday I was here 8 months already, and 1 year ago yesterday I received the notice to come to Stuttgart for my affidavit. It is a good sign when the time seems to pass so fast.

Love Trudel

P.S

In answer to your picture postal card — Except for my annual cold I am fine. I have not talked to Aunt Henny since Xmas. I have tried to call her several times in vain. We are very busy at work now.

How do you like Leonard’s German? It would be real nice if each of you would write to him once too. Or is that asking too much?


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January 25, 1935 “….setting my hair with curlers and pins as it is proper for a real American lady.”

January 25, 1935 “….setting my hair with curlers and pins as it is proper for a real American lady.”

Friday Eve 1/25/35

My Dear Good Daddy:

As you can see this was only an empty threat to my sisters that I would not write unless they wrote to me. I would never think of not writing to you regularly. I was very happy to receive your nice letter of Jan. 10th yesterday.

Please excuse my writing with pencil tonight. I am already undressed after giving myself my weekly, very necessary manicure, a shampoo and setting my hair with curlers and pins as it is proper for a real American lady. Now I am wondering how my hair is going to look tomorrow. Who knows what kind of wild look I will have when I am planning to go to Weils tomorrow.

Tonight I went downtown and the stores were trying to close right before my nose. I managed to get in one, so they closed behind my back.

Yes, you are right. My letters are written just as I happen to think of it. But I am trying to answer your letters as well as possible. I always read them over a few times but in the future will have them at hand when I write to make sure I answer everything.

Trudel with flowers

Not so wild

Did Liss receive my Xmas letter? I wrote about 10 of them. I picked the nicest one for her and at the same time thanked her for the sweet greeting she sent me. Hope she got it.

Have not heard from Aunt Henny again all week. I suppose I have to send her a postal card again to remind her that I still walk among the living. (And hopefully for a very long time as well and happy as now.)

I have not talked again to Mrs. Greenfelder-Stein’s sister in law. I will probably call her next week since we are starting work later.

Thanks G’d. I have now found a way so I do not have to eat alone every night in a basement restaurant (for about 35¢). Wednesday nights I usually eat at Gwen Bishop’s and stay overnight. Sat. and Sunday of course I am with Leonard.

The other evenings I shall sometimes eat with a very nice Jewish couple here in the building. I made her a hat out of some fur she had and I got the bright idea to ask them. I asked her if she would mind very much to cook for 3 instead of 2. I pay the same as I would in the restaurant but get good home cooked food and nice company. Tonight I had my 1st meal with then and I enjoyed it so very much.

Also I am very glad if I can go home directly after work in this lousy weather. It was bitter cold all week–12 degrees Fahrenheit. You have to figure out yourself what that would be Celsius. Today it was melting and the streets are awful slippery.

If you should talk to Rabbi Salzberger please give him my regards. I am concerned that he never answered my letter from Sept.

How do you like Leonard’s German writing? In the future I will write a translation of what he writes in English.

Now I am tired I want to go to sleep.

My loving greetings to everybody.

Your ever loving Trudel

 

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